ArenaChicks Volume 1
ArenaChicks is the brainchild of wrestling vet and real life Southern Belle Amber O’Neal. It’s goal, similar to that of SHIMMER and NCW Femmes Fatales, is to provide a place for women wrestlers to come together and wrestle serious, high quality matches against one another. This is their first DVD compilation of matches.
Featuring: Amber Gertner, Amber O’neal, Angel Orsini, Divina Fly, Jessicka Havok, Sara Del Rey, Sassy Stephie, Mia Svensson, Brittney Force, Fantasia, Kristin Flake, Persephone, Talia Madison, Cindy Rogers, GeeStar, Alere Little Feather, Becky Bayless, Cecil Scott, Roo-D Lewis, Ben Tyler, Michael McAllister, Chiva Kid, Coach Gemini
Rating Scale: 1-10 with 10.0 being Scream (Great), 5.0 being Scream II (Good), and 1.0 being Scream III (Fast Forward). NC (No Contest) is for matches that can’t be fairly scored, i.e. extremely short matches, squash matches, etc.
Allison Danger vs. Mia Svensson – 6.5/10
The first bout was a bit of a treat for long time Allison Danger fans. Over the past few years we’ve gotten accustomed to just see the gruff but good-hearted “Momma Danger” in SHIMMER. Apparently there was something about the mid-Atlantic area that brought AD back to her rage filled, ego-maniacal Ring of Honor roots.
Mia Svensson‘s response to Danger’s new found love of hair pulls, eye gouges, and hip attacks, was a kick-kick-kick-kick-kick style offense. This suits Mia and I hope she continues to develop in that direction. Good match, with some hard hits and the coolest Old School Expulsion ever.
Post-Match: Danger threatened to put an old man in a home and emphatically told everyone emphatically to “kiss it.” Indeed.
Sassy Stephie vs. Fantasia – 6.0/10
First words in the match: “Stupid southerners.” Ouch, Sassy Stephie, ouch. Stephie put a bit of a hurting on Fantasia too, maintaining the upper hand in spite of a size disadvantage. The commentators talked up Fantasia’s MMA and boxing experience, but we didn’t get to see too much of that in the ring. We did see a rather devastating bit of power to counter too Stephie’s second-to-none yelling ability: “I’m Sassy Stephie, you can’t do that to me!!!” “If you disqualify me, I will take you out!!!”
Good times. Hope to see Fantasia’s full on Beast mode in the future.
Divina Fly vs. Kristin Flake – 5.5/10
You’d be able to tell Kristin Flake was trained by Amber O’Neal just from her wrestling, which made her immediately likeable, and Divina Fly looked solid for such a young wrestler. Oddly, the highlight of the match perhaps was Divina Fly slapping Flake’s manager, Justin Duke, off the apron so hard that he did a double 360. Has to be seen.
Australian Football Rules” Amber O’Neal and Chiva Kid vs. “The Rate Tank” Kellie Skater and Coach Gemini – 7.0/10
This was the most talked about match leading up to the DVD release, and with good reason. It was a fun match that perfectly highlighted what makes Kellie Skater one of the most enjoyable wrestlers today. Somehow comedic and menacing all at once, Skates looked like a woman among goatboys as she wrecked Chiva Kid with kick after kick. The greatness was all around: Coach Gemini’s “Free” kicks, Amber O’Neal setting the figurative house on fire after tiring of the free kicks, and Chiva Kid getting some revenge with an enzuigiri right to the face.
Bonus points for the contentious, and hilarious, commentary of Amber Gertner and “Creepy” Cecil Scott.
Sara Del Rey vs. Allison Danger – 7.5/10
The only thing scarier than Sara Del Rey in a bad mood is Sara Del Rey in a good mood. She started this one off all smiles while Danger unwisely taunted and teased her. After ending up on the bottom of a mat exchange Danger’s only response was, “No means no, Sara.” Yeah.
Danger seemed a bit more confident, and extremely pleased with herself, later as she used her “Buns of Steel” to deliver a running hip attack to SDR. Soon after Sara went into what color commentator O’Neal appropriately called a “burst of butt whooping.” Takako Inoue chokeslam. Stiff kicks straight to the BoS. Danger recovered somehow and hit a wicked diving kneestrike right to Sara Del Rey’s grille. Allison Akiyama. Stellar.
This was the best pure wrestling match on the show. It was just as good as what you’d expect from both in SHIMMER, and maybe even a bit above that.
Angel Orsini vs. Jessicka Havok – 6.5
Jesskicka Havok, our favorite deranged powerhouse, took on the Most Interesting Woman in Wrestling, Angel Orsini. As O’Neal put it, it was Havok bringing the “dirty dirty” while Orsini looked to go all Taz with the suplexes. Appropriately, Havok channeled her inner “Mr. PPV” with sick kick combo towards the end. Another good match.
“The Dating Game” Sassy Stephie, Brittney Force, Cecil Scott & Michael McAllister vs. Angel Orsini, Divina Fly, Ben Tyler & Roo-D Lewis – 6.5/10
Being an 8 person elimination tag, the match was expectedly hectic, but still quite entertaining. Sassy Stephie and Cecil Scott were the stars of this one. Scott was tossing out silky smooth kicks like a white Taiyo Kea.
Stephie again put in her bid for “Best Vocal Performance in a Pro Wrestling Match” with a loud “KISS….MY…..SASS!!!” before dropping an opponent.
Bonus Match: Tribute to Sherri Martel 8-Woman Tag – Amber O’Neal, Allison Danger, Persephone & Talia Madison vs. Cindy Rogers, GeeStar, Alere Little Feather & Becky Bayless – 6.0/10
Another solid multi-person match. Nice piece of history as well, very nice to have it on the DVD. Everyone had a chance to shine and all looked good.
Commentary, Interviews, Storylines, Etc. – 7.5/10
This DVD features something I don’t ever recall hearing in wrestling: two women calling a match by themselves. It doesn’t happen nearly as often as it should, and Amber O’Neal and Amber Gertner do a fine job on the matches they commentate.
As mentioned earlier, this DVD is a compilation as opposed to a single a show. It can feel a bit disjointed at times, but this is not a major issue.
The DVD itself features great cover and disc artwork. It really stands out among the standard pro wres DVD style.
Sassy Stephie fans get to find out what it’s like to take Ms. Big League on a date, at the expense of the hapless Cecil Scott. Comedy reigns.
Overall Rating – 7.0
This is a great first effort from ArenaChicks. There’s not a single bad match here, and a few very, very good ones. The people who will get the most out of this DVD are fans of Allison Danger, Sassy Stephie, and Kellie Skater, but anyone with a general interest in good, fun wrestling should check this out. There are the foundations here for yet another great women’s wrestling promotion worthy of support. Recommended.
Wrestlin’ Wally Photography: http://www.wrestlinwally.com